Halloween is supposed to be a time of spooky costumes and yummy candy treats. For children with food allergies it also can be a time when they face exclusion and a real risk of having an allergic reaction. I really struggle with trying to celebrate Halloween. It’s harder than Valentine’s Day or even Easter! Admittedly, many of you are blessed and don’t have quite the crazy food allergy list that we juggle.  For Jacob, I don’t think there is any candy that is safe for him aside from Enjoy Life Chocolate bars, and Yummy Earth fruit snacks & lollipops at this time! Kids with Food Allergies has compiled a GREAT handout with ideas for making your Halloween both fun and safe! [click here: KFA Celebrates Halloween to see their list.]


Here are some ideas for celebrating the holiday traditionally:

  • Trick or Treat having child wear gloves and not allow them to eat or have ANY of the collected candy. Allow them to trade it for a coveted toy, video game, or safe treats.
  • Go around your Trick or Treat route in advance leaving safe treats that each neighbor can then give your child.

How about making some new traditions?

  • Go Apple Picking
  • Make home-made donuts and let kids decorate them and eat for dinner!
  • Host a haunted house or go on Haunted Hayrides
  • Stay in w/ home-made treats and rent some funny or scary movies; perhaps classics like the Wolfman, Disney or Johnny Depp in the Legend of Sleepy Hollow; Arsenic and Old Lace, The Wizard of Oz, Scooby-Doo, Monsters Inc. Wallace & Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit,.. etc.  For younger kids Mickey Mouse, Backyardigans, and many of the kids shows usually offer a Halloween episode [Netflicks!]
  • Many schools and community centers do a safe-zone party with costume contests, games etc.
  • Wear costumes and go to an indoor arcade like Jokers, or Chucky Cheese, the arcade rides at Walmart or the Mall.
  • Go Bowling or Roller Skating!
We tried trick or treating for the first time two years ago and just didn’t let Caleb have any of the candy.  We do have two neighbors who are friends and know our children and their allergies. They always get a little something safe for them as a Halloween treat. Last year the lovely older couple gave them each a glow-in-the-dark Hexbug! It was a huge hit with both boys! Most years, we go visit each of them early- 5:00 ish, then come home so we can hand out candy and watch fun shows. We always have a nice evening, (and as an added bonus, I don’t spend weeks shifting the candy from the bowl to my hips)!   How do you keep the holiday fun? Do you try to make it as normal as possible? Or do you find a new way to celebrate by creating new family traditions?


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